Listening to: Insistent cat whining. Stop whining.

I am currently playing Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness on my Nintendo DS. I can't help myself because, frankly, I just openly adore the Pokemon franchise. Something about the fact that you have 17 (I think it's 17) different types of Pokemon over a span of roughly 490 individual Pokemon creatures. 490! I can't even fathom that number! What number was it again? Exactly.

I'm only on Chapter 6 right now, but I can give my first impressions of the game.

When you first boot up the game, it makes you take this Pokemon Quiz that essentially determines which Pokemon you are. You don't have a fancy-shmancy character select screen, you take a quiz. They ask you questions like, "If there was a piece of cake that was one day past the expiration date, what would you do?" and it would provide you with options such as "think about it for a moment and then eat it".

I ended up as Pikachu. I secretly wanted Chimchar, but we'll leave that to another psychiatrist session.

You eventually find yourself teaming up with another Pokemon (that you do get to choose) as your teammate and form an exploration team with the explorer's guild. S/he, by the way, is a wuss at all times and has to overcome their inherent fear of everything. In my case, Wuss-mander. I chose him because he was the first Pokemon I ever had.

The game is essentially a Roguelike, which is your run-of-the-mill dungeon crawler. You run around, try to find the stairs to the next level/floor, fight bad guys, collect treasure and level up your characters. There's some kind of storyline that follows the "Gears of Time" being stolen from key areas in this world, but it's all kind of vague to me.

I find myself much more interested in the grind of fulfilling/completing job tasks posted on the job bulletin boards (such as saving the Grimer that is on floor five of the Beach Cave) and seeing what Pokemon reside in these dungeons. I also relish in the idea of leveling up my characters so much that they can murder an opposing Pokemon by blinking at them.

Okay, that's enough from me. It's worth a go if you're a fan of the franchise and Roguelikes, but it's nothing to write home to mom about... speaking of which--it's Mother's Day this Sunday. Go do something nice like not being a jerk for a day.